Analysis Of Breaking Tradition By Kathleen Ernst

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Before the Civil War, women were portrayed as petite beings that had to be cared for and looked after by their husbands and male relatives. However, during the Civil War and afterwards, women, as a whole, went through major social change. The article, “Breaking Tradition,” by Kathleen Ernst, effectively details all the changes that women went through during a life of war and freedom from social standards previously set for all females before the men were sent off. Ernst uses a variety of strategies to argue her point, and effectively support her claim that the Civil War brought social change to women. To begin, Kathleen Ernst uses a multitude of examples of change in the article. One example is, “Other women entered new occupations created …show more content…
One example of pathos is when the author states, “Poor white women needed to help support their families. Unmarried immigrant women arrived looking for work and a place to live.” This use of pathos is important to the overall passage because it fills the reader with a sense of sympathy toward the women during the civil war. It shows that they had to fight for themselves, and that change was necessary and bound to happen, or else the women would have had miserable lives for a lengthy amount of time. Another example of pathos in the article is when she is talking about the female reformers. “These forward thinkers risked being abandoned by their families and ridiculed by neighbors. Some even were hit with rotten fruit when they appeared in public. They struggled on, however, believing that women should be free to explore all of their creative and intellectual interests and abilities.” This use of pathos also shows that there was a true transformation in these women’s lives; they were ridiculed and abandoned, but they still held their heads high in their fight for women’s freedom. The final way they use pathos is when talking about women working in factories. “By 1860, almost 300,000 women worked in textile mills, shoe and clothing factories, and printing plants. They spent long days tending looms or other dangerous equipment.” This can show the reader what the hardships some women went through were, in an attempt to make a better life for their children and other women ahead of them. It shows that there is transformation from their old life of cleaning up the house for the husband, and doing the laundry; they were doing hard labor in intense industrial environments. The use of pathos in this article effectively explains to the reader the hardships some women went through in order to transform their lives, and other women’s lives in the

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